The FJC mourn the death of the author of the famous poem about the war ion Degen (extended version)

Moscow. April 28. INTERFAX – the President of the Federation of Jewish communities of Russia Alexander Boroda has expressed condolences to relatives of the writer, the hero of the great Patriotic war ion Degen, who died Friday in Israel.

“Ion Lazarevich lived a long life, he did not live just a few months before his 92 birthday. He managed to do very much every year of his life he tried to improve the world, and by their bravery, honor, kindness, and the talent he left behind a lot of the world”, – the telegram says A. Beard, quoted by his press service.

Jewish activist called I. Degen a hero of a whole generation.

“He remains an example for many: his fate was not easy, he went to the front at a young age, returned with many orders and medals and he resumed his studies. The horrors of war, it did not break and he managed to achieve much in science and medicine, and throughout his life he reflected on paper in verse and prose,” – said A. Beard.

The Chairman of the Board of the Jewish Museum and tolerance center, editor in chief of the journal “Lehaim” Boruch Gorin also expressed condolences to the families of the deceased today, the poet, the physician and war veteran.

“For many ion Lazarevich Degen was primarily the author of the poem “My friend in mortal agony,” clearly and firmly outlining what can be called the dark side of war,” writes B. Gorin, adding that I. Degen was not only a poet and that “his biography is abundantly enough for several people.”

“Tanker ACE, who was awarded the title of Hero solely because of the anti-Semitism of his superiors, the surgeon, the first in the world presisi a severed hand, a proud Jew, not leaning front-ranking anti-Semites of all ranks, steadfast Communist, who came to the faith of the fathers. And, above all, he was a Man in a capital – talented, bright, enthusiastic,” recalls the late B. Gorin.

During participation in the fighting in the 2-th separate guards tank brigade crew I. Degen was destroyed 12 German tanks and four self-propelled guns, lots of guns, machine guns, mortars, and enemy personnel. He suffered severe burns and four injured. As a result of recent injuries on 21 January 1945, received disability. He was twice presented the title of Hero of the Soviet Union.

Also known as doctor, poet, writer. He is the author of the famous poem about the war “My friend”, written in December 1944. For a long time it was copied and passed down orally with a lot of distortion as a poem by an unknown author-the veteran. Authorship I. Degen only became known in the late 1980s.

In December 2014, the State Kremlin Palace hosted an awarding Degen prize of the Federation of Jewish communities of Russia “Fiddler on the roof”.